World Cup bolters: Daniel Arzani, Lee Seung-woo, Steven Beitashour earn surprise call

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    World Cup bolters: Daniel Arzani, Lee Seung-woo, Steven Beitashour earn surprise call



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    Three of Asia's five 2018 World Cup representatives chose to name preliminary squads on or before the May 14 deadline.

    All three nations were forced to make tough decisions, with newly appointed coaches Bert van Marwijk and Shin Tae-yong particularly determined to make their mark on their respective squads.

    Here are the three surprise inclusions in each of the early lists:

    Australia: Daniel Arzani
    Van Marwijk went down the unusual route of naming two preliminary squads. A week after Australia's initial 32-man was named, the Dutchman reduced it to 26 on Tuesday.
    Daniel Arzani survived the first cut at least and may be about to make his international debut. The 19 year-old Melbourne City star hit form at the right time, coming to the fore in the second half of the just-finished A-League season. The creative midfielder has been exciting fans Down Under and could be a classic late bolter. It is no surprise that Iran boss Carlos Queiroz was also looking at the Iranian-born star named the 2017-18 A-League Young Footballer of the year -- Arzani offers unpredictability and something a little different.

    Few would argue against such a selection, but the main talking point surrounding Australia's squad was the omission of Jamie Maclaren. The striker has been in fine form for Hibernian in the Scottish Premier League since joining the Edinburgh team on loan in January, scoring eight goals to help Hibs into fourth place. The 24 year-old made the first cut but not the second, starting a debate as to whether an in-form Maclaren -- who ended the season with a hat trick against Rangers -- should be staying home while 38-year-old veteran Tim Cahill, who has played little club football in 2018, gets to go.
    None of that is the concern of Arzani, though. The teenager looks to have a bright future in the game and has an excellent chance of making the final 23-man squad. That would give Van Marwijk at least a little ammunition against the charge that he cares not about the future of Aussie football once the World Cup is over. Arzani could be around for some time to come.


    South Korea: Lee Seung-woo

    Calling up a previously uncapped player is always going to raise eyebrows, but Korea coach Shin has named three. Much more has been written and said about the inclusion of Lee Seung-woo than that of Oh Ban-suk and Moon Seon-min.

    It has been expected for years that the 20-year-old would be appearing at World Cups, just not the 2018 version. The "Korean Messi" -- as he was once called -- has been making headlines since 2011 when he joined Barcelona as a teenager. It never quite happened for the forward with the spiky haircut and silky skills in Spain and last August, he moved east across the Mediterranean to join Hellas Verona in Italy.

    He took time to make much of an impact in his first season but a first goal on May 6 against AC Milan showed what he is capable of: A spectacular volley from the edge of the area. In the end, it wasn't enough to stop the team slipping through the trapdoor to Serie B but it can't have done the player's confidence any harm.
    As Shin said when unveiling his picks, as coach of the under-20 team at the 2017 U20 World Cup, he knows Lee's strengths and weaknesses well. Lee looked very good indeed in the group stage, scoring a delightful goal against Argentina, but was anonymous when the pressure was on in the second round against Portugal.
    Yet Shin is right when he says that Lee's speed and dribbling can cause problems for defences such as Sweden's -- Korea's opening game opponents. It would be a surprise if Lee makes the pitch in Nizhny Novgorod but his career has already provided plenty.

    Iran: Steven Beitashour

    Steven Beitashour was included in Iran's squad for the 2014 World Cup, though did not actually make an appearance in Brazil. Since then, the right-back has not been called-up by Team Melli boss Carlos Queiroz. That is, until last Sunday.

    Many thought that Sadegh Moharrami would get the nod after the 22-year-old impressed with Iranian champions Persepolis, but Queiroz opted to go with Beitashour.
    Now 31, the Californian-born defender plays his football for new Major League Soccer franchise LAFC. Queiroz, however, was not the first international coach to call-up the energetic and hard-working full-back. That was Jurgen Klinsmann. In August 2012, Beitashour sat on the bench as the United States famously defeated Mexico 1-0 at the Azteca. Things could have been very different for the player if he had made the pitch but he remained eligible for Iran.

    Queiroz took advantage in 2013 and Beitashour went to the World Cup. Since Brazil, he left Vancouver Whitecaps, had two seasons with Toronto FC and joined LAFC earlier in 2018. Now he is back in the national team fold, there is still work to do to make the final 23. Vouria Ghafouri of Tehran titans Esteghlal and Belgium-based Ramin Rezaeian would be ahead of Beitashour in the pecking order according to most fans, but you never know.

    A very well-taken goal against FC Dallas earlier in May must have helped. It showed that Beitashour can still has the engine to get into offensive positions and the composure to make it count. The next step is to get on that plane to Russia.

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    I'm sure it was a very difficult decision for Arzani. He chose Australia and he should be proud of himself for making such a difficult decision at a young age.

    Being that I'm the first comment in this thread, I want all of you to think about a few things before you make assumptions about Arzani's decision:



    1) The fact that there are Iranians playing for other national teams should not make us feel bad or hurt.

    2) The fact that Arzani is an Iranian, that he's a talented footballer who the Australians wanted should make us proud! And not because they're Australia but because when there are Iranians who play for other national teams the eyes of the world (scouts and etc.) shift towards Iran. Even if it's just 10/10000 scouts it's still good

    3) Iran is no Brazil (and Brazil is no Iran lol), but think about how talented Brazilian footballers play for other national teams. That is not bad, that's a good sign for Brazilian football.

    4) The decision was hard as in his interviews Arzani sounded humble, appreciative and proud of his Iranian heritage. He didn't automatically choose Australia. He spoke with his family and at the end of the day he chose Australia.

    5) Last point: Think about the positive influence Carlos Queiroz has had on domestic based Iranian players. More players want to go play football in Europe after our head coach's positive influence on them. What I mean to say is, to sum it up, there will be more Arzani's in the future and inshallah there will come a time when we won't get upset if an Iranian chooses a different national team. Instead we will be proud.

    Unless they are vatan foroush of course lol

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    I dont understand why we can't be like the turks when it comes to Arzani? I havent until this day met a single turk who hates Özil because he plays for Germany, in fact all of them love Özil.

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    Quote Originally Posted by teammelli91 View Post
    I'm sure it was a very difficult decision for Arzani. He chose Australia and he should be proud of himself for making such a difficult decision at a young age.

    Being that I'm the first comment in this thread, I want all of you to think about a few things before you make assumptions about Arzani's decision:



    1) The fact that there are Iranians playing for other national teams should not make us feel bad or hurt.

    2) The fact that Arzani is an Iranian, that he's a talented footballer who the Australians wanted should make us proud! And not because they're Australia but because when there are Iranians who play for other national teams the eyes of the world (scouts and etc.) shift towards Iran. Even if it's just 10/10000 scouts it's still good

    3) Iran is no Brazil (and Brazil is no Iran lol), but think about how talented Brazilian footballers play for other national teams. That is not bad, that's a good sign for Brazilian football.

    4) The decision was hard as in his interviews Arzani sounded humble, appreciative and proud of his Iranian heritage. He didn't automatically choose Australia. He spoke with his family and at the end of the day he chose Australia.

    5) Last point: Think about the positive influence Carlos Queiroz has had on domestic based Iranian players. More players want to go play football in Europe after our head coach's positive influence on them. What I mean to say is, to sum it up, there will be more Arzani's in the future and inshallah there will come a time when we won't get upset if an Iranian chooses a different national team. Instead we will be proud.

    Unless they are vatan foroush of course lol

    In short, Daniel Arzani sarvareh Andrew Agassi ye!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zamboor View Post
    I dont understand why we can't be like the turks when it comes to Arzani? I havent until this day met a single turk who hates Özil because he plays for Germany, in fact all of them love Özil.
    This guy is talking so much poop, seriously can you leave this forum? First with your comparsion with golshifteh and then this... Go watch Germany Turkey in 2011 and see how much they love him when he had the ball.

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    It's that Beitashour is in the article, otherwise I would've moved it to the International Football forum.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zamboor View Post
    I dont understand why we can't be like the turks when it comes to Arzani? I havent until this day met a single turk who hates Özil because he plays for Germany, in fact all of them love Özil.
    If they in fact love him as you claim then they are idiots who love traitors.
    I went to Sharif University. I'm a superior genetic mutation, an improvement on the existing mediocre stock.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zamboor View Post
    I dont understand why we can't be like the turks when it comes to Arzani? I havent until this day met a single turk who hates Özil because he plays for Germany, in fact all of them love Özil.
    I don't know what type of Turks you know, but the ones I know (at least 90% of them) hated him, and at one point just didn't really care for him anymore.


    For me it's too late, but if my youngest son ever comes in a situation where he would have both options to consider (Iran and the Netherlands), I would kick his ass and then disinherit him if he would even only for 1 second think about or consider Holland as an option.
    Even if Holland would have qualified for a WC and Iran didn't and he would have the option to play for them in a WC, I would still tell him not to (and he's been born here and has a part Dutch in him).

    The same way he would never consider playing for PP!


    It's Iran and Esteghlal only (well, more like any club besides PP), or nothing else!
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    World Cup bolters: Daniel Arzani, Lee Seung-woo, Steven Beitashour earn surprise call

    Quote Originally Posted by Zamboor View Post
    I dont understand why we can't be like the turks when it comes to Arzani? I havent until this day met a single turk who hates Özil because he plays for Germany, in fact all of them love Özil.
    Because in our nationalist principals something like that is considered as “selling out”

    I am guessing you were raised outside of Iran and are not familiar with our national principals

    Either that or you were raised by communist parents that were against Iranian nationalist values

    Or you are a communist yourself

    Judging by all of your anti Iranian posts all three of the above applies to you

    I dont mind the commies as long as they go and live in north korea or cuba

    not to live in sweden and try to prescribe communist values for Iranians

    If I am not mistaken you once confessed of having the political STD (Communism) ideology
    چو ایران نباشد تن من مباد

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amin_ View Post
    I don't know what type of Turks you know, but the ones I know (at least 90% of them) hated him, and at one point just didn't really care for him anymore.


    For me it's too late, but if my youngest son ever comes in a situation where he would have both options to consider (Iran and the Netherlands), I would kick his ass and then disinherit him if he would even only for 1 second think about or consider Holland as an option.
    Even if Holland would have qualified for a WC and Iran didn't and he would have the option to play for them in a WC, I would still tell him not to (and he's been born here and has a part Dutch in him).

    The same way he would never consider playing for PP!


    It's Iran and Esteghlal only (well, more like any club besides PP), or nothing else!
    Very interesting, yet you live in Holland yourself... enough said

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